Cops Release Records on the Smollett Case

And top prosecutor Kim Foxx explains the decision not to prosecute
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2019 5:25 PM CDT

(Newser) – "Right now, there's a lot of emotion." So said Chicago's head prosecutor Wednesday as she explained the thinking behind the dismissal of actor Jussie Smollett's case—a decision that angered Chicago's mayor and chief of police, WBEZ reports. Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx goes on: "And I wholeheartedly believe that in our work we cannot be driven by emotions. We have to be driven by facts." According to Foxx, charges against Smollett amounted to a Class 4 felony, which rarely leads to prison time. Smollett also forfeited his $10,000 bond (which "most people" don't do, she said) and completed community service. For Foxx, it appears to be no big deal. What does break her heart? "When I see a 2-year-old who [is] shot while sitting on her mother's lap and there's not that level of outrage." For more:

  • Chicago police released supplemental Smollett-case records to media—the ones that identify the Empire actor as an "offender," not the original records that call him a "victim," per CNN. The two reports (here and here) describe behind-the-scenes moves by prosecutors and police during the investigation, per the Chicago Tribune.

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  • For example, police kept the brothers accused of staging the attack on Smollett—Abimbola Osundairo and Olabinjo Osundairo—in a hotel for six nights, with food and 24-hour security. The brothers' names are redacted "but the context makes clear" who they are, says the AP.
  • One of the brothers told police it felt good to come clean but said he did put bleach in a hot-sauce bottle and pour it on Smollett, per CNN.
  • The police records "cast doubt" on Smollett's contention that he paid the brothers $3,500 for training sessions, says CBS News. At the brothers' top hourly rate, $50, Smollett would have been paying for 70 sessions with one check.
  • Smollett attorney Patricia Brown Holmes says investigators should now look into whether the Osundairo brothers perpetrated the alleged racist, anti-gay attack: "The two men who attacked him have indicated that they attacked him, so we already know who attacked him," she tells the Hollywood Reporter.
  • The brothers refused to take their lawyer's advice and release a statement after Smollett was freed—so now the lawyer, Gloria Schmidt, has dropped them, TMZ reports.
  • Smollett fulfilled his 16 hours of community service Sunday and Monday by helping out at a Chicago bookstore and telling children about the value of discipline and a good attitude, per the New York Times.
(Read more Jussie Smollett stories.)

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